What is a personal trainer?
A personal fitness trainer is a fitness professional possessing the knowledge, skills and abilities for safe and effective exercise and fitness program design, instruction and assistance for the purpose of reaching personal health and fitness goals.
Who needs a personal trainer?
Personal trainers aren't for everyone. But a trainer provides certain benefits that you can't find when working out on your own. Here are ten reasons a personal trainer may be right for you.
Motivation One of the main reasons people benefit from a personal trainer is that they lose motivation to stick with a consistent exercise program. Certified personal trainers can provide structure and accountability, and help you develop a lifestyle that encourages health.
Individualized program If you have any chronic health conditions, injuries or training goals, like running a marathon, a trainer will work with you and your health care provider to plan a safe, efficient program that considers these needs and enable you to reach your health goals.
Efficiency Personal trainers help you focus on results and stop wasting your time doing inefficient workouts. A personal trainer has a plan and will help you get maximum results in minimum time.
Improve technical skills If you play a particular sport, the right personal trainer will help you improve your skill by showing you new training techniques specific to your sport. The trainer will incorporate skills training into your program so you improve not only your strength and endurance, but your agility and mental focus as well.
You are new to exercise If you are an absolute beginner; a personal trainer is the ultimate fitness coach. A good trainer will introduce you to a very simple, effective routine and build efficiently so before you know it, you have the confidence and knowledge to decide what is right for you.
Break through plateaus OK, you are already in pretty decent shape, but you've been there for years. If you are stuck in the same routine and want to break out of a rut, a personal trainer is the perfect solution. A trainer will jump start, not only your motivation, but your routine as well.
Learn how to do it alone If you ultimately want to learn all the facets of designing your own routines so you don't need to use a personal trainer, going for a few months may be all you need. All good personal trainers will teach you the basics of building and modifying a fitness program to achieve maximum results.
Workout Safely A personal trainer watches your form, monitors your vitals and can provide objective feedback about your limits and strengths. Most of us tend to ignore some of the subtle signals our body provides. We either push through pain or give up too soon. Because a personal trainer can watch what you are doing while you are doing it, they can help push you or slow you down as necessary.
Workout at home Many personal trainers make house calls. If you don't have the type or interest in going to a gym, but have a hard time knowing what to do on your own at home, a personal trainer can bring fitness into your living room.
Lose weight There is a good reason that the number one reason people hire personal trainers is to lose weight and get into shape -- it works! If you made a resolution to lose the fat and build the muscle, a trainer can keep you on track and help you realize that goal.
Before you hire a personal trainer you should ask the following questions:
What are your qualifications and certifications?
A qualified personal trainer has an education in physiology, health promotion, athletic training, kinesiology or a similar field. They should have First Aid and CPR certification, as well as certification from a reputable organization such as ACSM, ACE, IDEA, YMCA, NSCA or similar.
Do you have liability insurance?
They should answer yes.
What are your policies and procedures?
A personal trainer should have a documented policy explaining their services, costs, cancellations, length of contract, and emergency procedures. They should also require a medical clearance form to be completed before they work with you.
Finally, you should feel comfortable with the trainer, his/her style of communication and the expectations of your time together.